updated 01:30 pm EDT, Thu July 26, 2007
Verizon Rethinks 700MHz
Verizon would accept the concept of opening the 700MHz band to any mobile device or provider -- but only under some conditions, the provider said in a statement today. Although still opposed to Google's offer to buy out and free up some of the spectrum, claiming that the search firm would be "imposing" freedom at the expense of special service plans, the carrier said it would prefer that the rules still allow for service contracts that are currently 'enjoyed' by cellphone customers today.
"The customer should be able to purchase a handset from a carrier and enter into a service agreement with that carrier, thereby giving the carrier responsibility for optimizing all aspects of the customer experience," Verizon said.
AT&T has recently expressed less conditional support of the concept of an easily accessible 700MHz band, saying that it would back the FCC and Google as long as its existing services weren't affected by attempts to open the new frequency to competitors and startups. Google said that its primary incentive for trying to block major cellphone carriers would be to ensure universal access to mobile Internet service.